Sept. 12, 2006
NEW ORLEANS, La. - The Tulane University football team returned to the practice field Tuesday afternoon at the Westfeldt Facility with one thing on their mind - Mississippi State.
Following a 45-7 loss to Conference USA foe last weekend at Roberston Stadium, Green Wave head coach Chris Scelfo said he believes his team will bounce back and show improvement in its week-two matchup against the Bulldogs in Starkville, Miss.
"I think Houston is a good football team, but I still think we are too," Scelfo said. "It's a long season and our players understand that. If there was a positive we can take out of it, it's that I think our players really, really understand exactly what's at stake and they felt a lot of remorse after the (Houston) game. As I said on the first day (of practice), we need to improve from the first day to the last day. If we do that, the other stuff will take care of itself."
Saturday's game at Davis Wade Stadium marks the fourth consecutive season that Tulane and Mississippi State will square off on the gridiron, and the Green Wave will be looking to tie the series up at two games apiece. Tulane won the 2003 contest 31-28 in the Louisiana Superdome, but lost the last two contests, 28-7 and 21-14, at Starkville, Miss., and Shreveport, La., respectively.
Both teams will be looking for their first win as the Bulldogs have dropped back-to-back SEC games to South Carolina (15-0) and Auburn (34-0) to open the 2006 season. The game will be broadcast on the Tulane ISP Sports Network (local station, WIST AM 690). In addition, live audio is available via the internet at www.TulaneGreenWave.com to registered members of the All-Access Pass. Live stats are also available free of charge on the official website of Tulane Athletics.
"Mississippi State presents a tremendous challenge physically," Scelfo said. "Mentally, they will challenge us more on the defensive side of the ball. They're as physical on defense as any Mississippi State team I've ever seen in the four years that we've played them.
"It's going to be a tremendous challenge for us, and when we have a chance to make a play, we've got to make it. We can't have dropped balls. We can't have missed assignments. When we have an opportunity to execute something to its fullest, we've got to take advantage of it because we're not going to get many of them."
The game in Starkville marks the second of three straight road games to open the 2006 season as Tulane will play at LSU on Sept. 23 before hosting C-USA opponent SMU on Sept. 30 at the Louisiana Superdome.
Season and single-game tickets for the 2006 season are currently for sale through the Tulane Athletics Ticket Office. Tickets can be purchased in person, via the telephone at (504) 861-WAVE or via the internet at www.TulaneGreenWave.com. In addition, single-game tickets are also available via Ticket Master at www.TicketMaster.com and at all Ticket Master outlets.